The food team from PLANED have worked tirelessly over the last nine months on a pilot project to bring the first fresh food vending machines to the county. Under the banner “Pembrokeshire Fresh Community Vending” there are now two fully operational 24/7 fresh food vending machines stocking local produce.
PLANED were successful in receiving funding for the project from the Welsh Government Rural Communities – Rural Development Programme 2014-2020, which itself, is funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) and the Welsh Government. The project very much promotes the availability and supply of quality local produce to all, and at a competitive price point that enables local people to benefit, as much as the additional income generated for local enterprises and businesses to reinvest and potentially expand.
In recent weeks, both machines have been official launched, the first at Llanteg and can be found sitting alongside the existing Dai’s Dairy milk vending at Folly Cross, next to Greenacre Market Garden. Inside the machine you will find a huge selection of produce, stocked by three local producers, produce incudes, fresh meat, dairy products, juice, jams, chutneys and at weekend fresh bread and locally made cheesecakes.
The second machine can be found at Steynton Farm, just outside Milford Haven. The Davies family, who farm the land, are hosting this machine and stocking it with their own home grown vegetables and locally made products, all of which are produced using produce grown at Steynton Farm.
Sue Latham the project coordinator said, “We were delighted that Samuel Kurtz MS was able to come along to officially open and cut the ribbon at our Llanteg machine, and then a week later, we welcomed Milford Town Councils, Councillor Martin Jones to repeat the opening ceremony at Steynton Farm. Both events saw great support from their respective local communities, some of whom, have had already been using the machines for a couple of weeks and have become regular purchasers”.
Both machines are stocking truly local produce, providing a circular local economy, but also engaging with the promotion of general health and wellbeing through affordable quality food.
Pembrokeshire produces some fantastic food and produce and these innovative machines, give those producers an opportunity to showcase their goods and provides a valuable further retail outlet for them, whilst providing 24/7 access to local communities.
For more information on the project, please contact the team on WCFD@Planed.org.uk